A recent Fox News guest says the federal minimum wage should be repealed entirely, referring to it as the “Black Teenage Unemployment Act.” Former Reagan economist Art Laffer made the comments while speaking to Fox News anchor Jenna Lee, believing that African-Americans needed to be encouraged to have jobs at all costs.
“The minimum wage makes no sense whatsoever to me,” he said. “And this is the very group that we need to have jobs, not be put out of work because of a minimum wage. So, I’m very much in favor of, at least for teenagers, getting rid of the minimum wage.”
Laffer said Americans were beginning to see that letting the private market deal with wage regulations was the way to go after the “failed” labor policies of the Obama administration, predicting that major changes would happen during the next presidential term. “What we should do is just a low-rate flat tax, spending restraints, sound money, free trade and minimal regulations.” he said. “[Let’s] get the government the heck out of the way.”
Meanwhile, American Enterprise Institute Resident Scholar Michael Strain targeted the long-term unemployed by suggesting that their minimum wage should be lowered to $4 an hour. He said that the lower wages would make hiring the long-term unemployed a more appealing prospect “because companies did not want to take a “$7.25 an hour risk on that worker.”
The current federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour, but several states pay more than this. California is set to increase their minimum wage to $9 per hour in July and then bump it up further to $10 per hour in January 2016.